Grading services certifying American Eagle silver bullion coins from multiple Mints

Responses to FOIA filings prompt issuance of special labels
By , Coin World
Published : 04/12/17
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While Professional Coin Grading Service and Numismatic Guaranty Corp. are grading and encapsulating 2014 to 2017 American Eagle silver bullion coin production at the West Point, San Francisco and Philadelphia Mints, PCGS won’t certify some coins until clarification can be obtained from the U.S. Mint on its shipping box number system.

“For 2014–2017 boxes that have a sticker on the side that includes the designation ‘WPM,’ PCGS believes that these [500-coin] boxes, regardless of their serial number, originated in West Point,” according to PCGS Vice President Mark Stephenson. “Therefore, at this time, and until we receive further clarification from the U.S. Mint, we will not be attributing such boxes to Philadelphia or San Francisco.”

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Acting upon the original documents provided to Coin World by the U.S. Mint, in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request and published online, PCGS began to grade, identify and encapsulate the bullion coins.

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Coin World's FOIA request was filed in February, at the same time that NGC independently sought the same information. The same information in response to both requests was provided to both Coin World and NGC, from which that Florida-based grading service developed its own grading label program for the coins.

PCGS explained in announcing its labeling program, “Until now, the information about how many American silver Eagles were made in each of the other branches has not been released to the public. Instead, the Mint’s figures officially reflected the total mintage, and listed those mintages as having been produced at West Point.

“However, the FOIA documents reveal a method of identifying where a given box of silver Eagles was minted. Following this method, PCGS will attribute coins from such boxes as having been produced at the Branch Mint at which it was made.”

For example, an American Eagle silver bullion coin minted at the Philadelphia Mint in 2015 would be attributed “2015-(P).”

Understanding the numbering system was key to enabling PCGS and NGC to identify coins by Mint of origin, since none of the bullion coins have Mint marks.

The “key” issue from the 2014 to 2017 period is the 2015 coin struck at the Philadelphia Mint, with a mintage of 79,640 pieces, a tiny fraction of the total in comparison to the nearly 47 million pieces struck at the West Point Mint (none were struck for 2015 at the San Francisco Mint).

Based on the information in the Mint's response, owners of Mint-sealed boxes of American Eagle silver bullion coins from 2014 to 2017 can find the box number, which is written in black marker, and determine the specific Mint facility where the box and its contents originated.

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Older Comments (7)
Hog wash ! another way to gouge collectors ? ANACS and the HSN network is selling 2015 (P) silver dollars for $3000.00 for a 70 is absurd , off of numbers on the sides of boxes ....If the security tape says West Point , its west point ! Quit playing games with the collectors . ANACS is taking a big risk , I will have to pass on the coin , I have a roll of 2015 Eagles and MS 70 slabs that have the same coin in them ,so back to basics , buy the coin not the slab . No mint mark , no $3000. no coin ... - I have been looking around and PCGS and NGC 2015P Silver Eagles BU slabs are selling for $15,000 to $20,000 per coin ....... ANACS is not the only GRADING COMPANY grading the coin but their graded coins are selling for like you said $3,000 and that is a lot cheaper than the other coin graders are selling the coin for a lot more !!!!!!! PLEASE tell me who as you said ( is taking a big risk ) ???????? I will never purchase one but there are folks out there that will pay the price for one ????????
ss_maui -

You are so right on these coins! Ripoff! Mike Mezack selling these on HSN tv shopping network graded ANACS MS-70 at $2999.99 each and calling them "the most important coin discovery in US Mint history" is total BS & hyperbole & totally wrong. I feel sorry for the poor suckers that buy these from any grading service or dealer! Just say NO collectors.
I should send my 2015's in to get graded. A quick profit of 2,975. for each coin?
If you are purchasing coins on HSN you are making a big mistake. You can make good purchases from many of the vendors listed right here in your Coin World subscription. Stop watching Mike Mezack and Coin Collector on HSN and don't blame ANACS, they have nothing to do with the way he decides to advertise the very over valued coins he sells.
dino24 -

Mezack has an exclusive business arrangement with ANACS for them to provide special labels for him for sale on HSN & CSN tv shopping networks only, complete with a limited edition number like "10 of 1000" & first day of issue etc. ANACS is a third-rate certification service behind PCGS & NGC. Yes, ANACS is wrong for doing these special labels for him only & are complicit in the ripoff! He even brags that he has such an exclusive business agreement with ANACS. Very sad & corrupt situation indeed!